Education Divides Rather Than Unites Society

The quality of education being delivered varies across private and public schools. Private schools being more costly can only be afforded by the relatively affluent class, whereas, public schools aren’t a burden on the wallet and therefore preferred by the common man. Although some public schools do manage to impart education of a high standard, most pale in comparison to private schools. With more funds to invest in the education of its pupils, private schools enjoy a better reputation than public schools. The reputation of the school matters a lot when it comes to college admissions where once again public school students are at a disadvantage.

In some developing countries, such as Pakistan and India, women in general and the rural woman in particular, are discouraged from attaining education. Male children are given preference when it comes to sending children to school, particularly if the household has a limited budget. Even educated individuals make such absurd choices and such practices have secluded women not only from schools but also from the workplace.

The living conditions of an individual dictate whether he/she would be able to complete his/her education or not. Therefore, for a person, who can not even fulfill his basic necessities attaining education is a much more difficult objective than it is for a person living a relatively luxurious life. Children belonging to such impoverished families find it increasingly difficult to pursue education while trying to earn bread and butter for their families. Most of them are unable to complete their primary education, not because they chose to do so but because circumstances dictated so. In such circumstances education is not assisting such individuals from breaking through the poverty cycle and thus leading to a wider gap between the rich and the poor, the educated and the uneducated.

Education standards also differ across geographical boundaries, across continents and across poles. The West is generally envied by the East for its quality of education, the reason why a number of students from the East choose colleges in the West (only the rich are able to do so). Similarly those living in rural areas do not have access to the same quality of education as those who reside in urban areas. Improvements in technology have to a very limited extent countered this issue. However, the pace at which technology is improving is remarkable and soon enough location would not be an issue.

Attaining an education might be a difficult journey for some and indeed for others an impossible one, but education does play a pivotal role in guaranteeing higher chances of employment and better paying jobs. If education is made more accessible and the quality that is imparted more uniform such that the rich are not advantaged and the poor not disadvantaged and that gender does not determine one’s chances of becoming educated and that an individual’s location doesn’t dictate the quality of education he/she is to receive, then only can education unite society.

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The Ultimate Role of Elder Law in Society

Certain professionals in the law field specialize in safeguarding the rights of the aging population. It’s quite obvious that a large percentage of the senior citizens have little or no say in the society when left on their own and this highly subjects them to risks of being mishandled by the rest especially when they don’t have relatives or close friends to take good care of them. In such instances, the Elder Law comes as the last option for such people. This team of professionals practicing the Elder Law protects the elderly from such victimizations.

How the Elder Law works

  • The Elder Law is mandated to protect the old people from going through certain hardships that result from their old age.
  • Health is one of the common factors contributing to poor life among the elderly ones and this law ensures that the necessary health care services are made available on regular basis for such people and this helps so much make their life better as compared to when left out there to take care of themselves.
  • The old ones are also not energetic to work and earn their living and this being basic can be quite frustrating if not provided. The same law is entitled to make such basic facilities available for the old ones and this further helps shape their live more.

How to contract an Elder Law firm for related services

  • Getting into an agreement with an Elder Law lawyer can cost you less than one can expect and the procedures involved are quite cheap to follow up. This ensures that no one is scared away while looking for such services and that everyone has equal rights to enjoy such services.
  • However, the charges are fair enough to bear with for most law firms providing such services. Such old people are mandated to financial support and imposing heavy charges to them doesn’t look good although not all law firms put this factor into consideration.
  • Actually such people are highly helped throughout the filling process as their age does not allow them to take such responsibilities on their own.

Other services provided by this law is ensuring that the aging ones are protected against losing their property to fraudsters and also following up certain requirements like pension on their behalf. Therefore the Elder Law should ensure that the lives of their clients are free from minor problems resulting from their old age.

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Pseudo-Feminism: The New Evil In The Society

Feminism, sexism, fascism, criticism or any ‘isms’ that prevail in this society has an underlying rule. If you misuse these terms, you are bound to look stupid to any imbecile out there. The fraudulent use of powerful words to implement ideologies and rights have recently created a dent in this society. Well, of course, we could push it away as nothing short of a Freudian Slip, but are we really going to be that ignorant?

Who is the better sex? Let us not indulge in that conversation yet, in fact, let us not indulge in that horrendous topic at all. After over grazing on a series of internet debates and mindless brain pickings, I came across a bunch of people who portray themselves as an army of righteous beings striving for the betterment of women in all walks of life. But I spotted a flaw. It was like a virus in our computers, disguised as a legitimate computer program.

They were the pseudo-feminists. The black mark we have feared all this while.

Why may you ask? Why are they the black mark in this society?

Let me give you an analogy. What would you infer about a cancer support volunteer who advocates a smoking commercial? Or a fitness centre employee who hands out free burger meal coupons? Outrageous isn’t it?

This is the similar case with pseudo-feminists. They are the people (both men and women) who claim to be feminists but yet successfully manage to ignore the true meaning of feminism, equality. You will know one when you see one. They are easy to spot. They are the ones who blather on and on about how terrible men are or how men have it easier in this world than them. Such allegations can lead to false rape accusations and denial of rape of men (Yes! Men get raped too).

Feminism demands only one thing and that is to be social equals. Everything else you have heard is utterly crass. Feminism is not misandry. They do not hate men. In a grossly male dominated world, it is hard to have a good impression on feminists.

What makes one a pseudo feminist? Well, take notes.

1. Encouraging the idea that women deserve more than men.

2. Thrusting ideologies of how women should be in a society without the consideration of free will.

3. Discouraging or patronising women who want to stay at home or choose to be home makers.

4. Condemning women who do not dress well or do not wish to wear makeup.

5. Failure to provide men with the benefit of the doubt when it comes to domestic violence or rape accusations.

6. Degrading men who choose to stay home and take care of the family.

The list goes on, but you get my point.

The word pseudo feminism has backfired on the true and honest individuals. Now, when a true judgement of equality arises, this word has been slapped on the feminists who try to make a point.

We cannot blame them. The word feminism is a misnomer among most these days. The society sees is it as a ‘dirty’ word proclaimed by a bunch of angry women with a lot of time in their hands. It is very easy to say that you are pro-women, but most of them don’t even know the true meaning and reason behind it.

But can you blame them? No. Because feminism is an abstract in itself, with a vague definite. You cannot assign a proved explanation or theory regarding the concept of feminism. Consider it as an emotion, unexplainable.

I am sure by now most of you feminists out there want my head on a spike, but I urge you to be patient. Give me the benefit of doubt.

We weld rape and harassment to feminism like peanut butter to jelly. When as a matter of fact it should be a concern to humanity and not gender specific. When a woman gets abused and raped, it should be a concern to the society, it should be a punch in the face to humanity because it can happen to men, transgender or any other gender that exist in this world. It is a matter of moral fibre.

When a woman graduates with a degree of the highest standards and yet decide to stay at home, that is her choice and not a shame to the education she received and definitely not a shame to the women of the society. This is equally applicable to men as well.

However, in the same train of thought, aren’t women really more emotionally equipped than men? I once saw this hilarious video by Mark Gungor on how men and women think differently. He said that men’s brains are made up of boxes and each box handles a specific job or emotion. Whereas a women’s brain is made up of wires, each job, emotion and memory are inter linked, one leading to the other.

I couldn’t agree more. Both men and women are biologically equipped differently. We must embrace this difference and not destroy it.

The true feminists both men and women (Ex: Emma Watson and Mark Ruffalo (The Hulk)) are too busy working to bring equality for all, they are not bigoted or biased. They fight for both men and women. They do not care if you want to work or not work, if you want to party all night or stay at home, they do not care about your job, your clothes, your looks or your financial status. But it comes down to one thing.

If you are a woman who shares a man’s status and level of authority, you make sure you get everything they have and nothing short of greatness. Because we deserve it, both men and as well as women. Opportunity and honour are the two keystones in life that must be handed to both men and women equally. Women should be able to join the hard core jobs like men, and men should be allowed to stay at home and take care of the family. That is not what pseudo feminists want. They envision a world run by women and women alone. Consider it as a mass genocide of men.

So, dear pseudo feminists, you do not get the extra benefit of respect only because you were born a girl. You will get it because you are a human and if you treat others well and so. Kindly stop giving men a reason to consider us feminists as a joke. Stop shaming men who cry. Stop expecting men to be the bread winner of the family. Stop supporting patriarchy.

Instead, stand up and fight for the women and men who have been vilified by the society as victims of rape and abuse. Stand up for equality.

Enough with the “We deserve more than men” comedy. Whom are you kidding? You are not worthy of tagging yourself as a feminist. And more importantly, do not use the word feminism to make your weak and silly argument seem credible. We know a fake when we see one.

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Family Is the Foundation of Society

It is often said that no one is perfect, but a team can be. However, we are much more than a “team.” We are a family.

In January 2011, during a celebration organized by my company, I said these words to my colleagues, with the purpose of highlighting the cohesiveness of our team.

Indeed, it’s common sense that “family is the foundation of society.”

Since my childhood, I used to hear my father saying:

A man arrives at home after a long working day. He is greeted at the door by his wife, who kisses him tenderly. The children also embrace their father warmly. With so much love, the fatigue simply disappears, giving space to the great feelings of loving and being loved.

How good it would be if, in every home, we could cultivate the atmosphere of love, peace, and serenity… So would our society become, and we could gradually build a wonderful world and an ideal future for our children – no war, cruelty, or selfishness. In fact, all evil would disappear, and we would turn to live long lives – lives filled with much more love.

Unfortunately, life concerns clearly affect family relations. Families, once well structured, nowadays face difficult times.

At least with respect to us, the Capeverdeans, emigration and the need for a better education have both caused the separation between parents and children, and these are factors that deeply affect the stability of families.

On the other hand, it is also difficult to avoid negative environments, which unfortunately, sometimes include our own schools. Facing such a high risk, it is essential that parents demonstrate, at all times, complete openness in relationships with their children, thus creating an ideal environment to clear all doubts that their children may have. Otherwise, the children are likely to start looking for support elsewhere and normally end up involved with malicious people.

At this point, I would like to stress the importance of family reunions. A snack, a barbecue, or simply going to the beach are all suggestions to enjoy pleasant and unforgettable moments. Whenever possible, those moments should be recorded on video, as this kind of stuff becomes valuable as time goes.

Let’s maintain a commitment to do something different with our family at least once a year. Christmas, Easter, and why not May 15th (the International Day of Families)… Well, actually the day does not really matter.

Everyday should be seen as a “day of families.”

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Fifty-Seven Years Old Men: The Society Expectation Theory (SET)

My father (Dad, may your soul rest in peace) built a house in Akokwa, Nigeria which had a block back fence, with the top strewn with broken glass and nails. In spite of the sharps, lizards, especially those with red heads and droopy necks, rested and crawled on top of the fence, going from one corner to the other.

On the inner side of the fence, a foot or so in front of the wall, was a lean, tall pawpaw tree. The tree was almost barren, having fed and bled for so many hungry children during the Biafra-Nigerian war. Like the red-headed lizards, we children used to stare at the pawpaw tree, hoping that it would produce one more pod. Then we would stare at the lizards with hungry eyes and I would wonder what they would do next. Would they continue crawling along the fence, or skip over to the pawpaw tree, or would they go down, diagonally across the block fence and to the ground?

Many men at age fifty-seven face the same dilemma as the old red-necked lizards. Their main preoccupation is how to proceed in life. In that mental preoccupation space, they face at least three options. They could scale over to engage life at a higher level of existence. They could continue on the even pedestal of wear and tear, mirroring the way they have lived their whole lives. Their third option, which as I remember none of the lizards chose, would be to surrender to the demands of society and run aground.

It may sound unimportant, but the choices we make at age fifty-seven can determine the way we live out the rest of our lives. Not that the decisions (material and moral) people make at any age cannot make or break them, but whereas a young man can recover quickly from a bad decision, an older person may not.

According to an Igbo proverb, the wood people gathered when they were young are what they will use in old age. On the surface, this proverb implies that they should work hard when they are young, then fold up and rest when they are old. Such a practice, if carried out, would lead to a decline in physical and mental health. The evidence of those who have chosen to do that is clear to see. A resurgence of creative energy, rather than a winding down, is what people need when they get older.

Men who, at age fifty-seven, let their body and their senses run along the same crawling path will sooner or later surrender to the challenges of life. They might have considered themselves as living a stable life, but stability does not exist in the universe. Status quo is never found in nature.

No one needs more than a second of thinking to understand that there is ongoing decay within the perceived realm of balance. A wrinkled skin everybody can see, but nobody sees internal organs. Even though they are hidden, the brain, the kidneys, the liver, and the guts are still getting as wrinkly and as fatigued as the skin. This explains why men at fifty-seven rapidly run out of breath, put on weight if they drink a bottle of lager, stout, beer or Soda, develop brain fog if someone challenges their thinking, and often suffer from urinary and genital dysfunctions.

An active lifestyle rather than a stable lifestyle is the answer to old age. The body is like a house. To maintain cleanliness, houses have to be swept, painted, and aired. Likewise, for men who are fifty-seven to keep going, they must live an active lifestyle. Fat and the accumulation of fat is their greatest enemy. Move it! Don’t get buried in fat. Go to the gym, jog, lift weights, play soccer, play basketball, run, and do all you can to remain as lean as the slender pawpaw tree.

Moreover, men at fifty-seven must choose what they eat. Salt is their greatest enemy. Avoid it with a vengeance! Half a teaspoon of iodized salt is all the body needs in a day. Resist being fed like a greedy baby who eats everything placed in front of him. Ask for meals that suit your new diet. At fifty-seven, you have earned the right to request what type of food somebody places in front of you. Cook them yourself, if for some reason those around you do not care for healthy life aspirations. Hopefully, your mother taught you how to cook when you were a child.

In his stage seven (Stagnation versus Generativity) psychosocial development theory, Erik Erikson envisioned men at fifty-seven as either being proud of their ongoing accomplishments or being sad if they lost motivation. Status quo would not cut it for men age this age. New inroads at this period in life, Erikson said, lead to a happier man, or woman. Like many psychologists and psychoanalysts, Erikson was interpreting what I think he witnessed in the interplay between man and society. What Erikson did not explicitly say, but which I find essential to understand, is that man is always answerable to the community, doing as society compels him to do.

On a closer look, any keen observer would conclude that society has always been both the bane and the savior of man. Society says, “Play your part and get out of the human stage or else we’ll get you out.” Man plays by the rules set forth by society. Age fifty-seven is about the perfect time to ditch society and chart our own destiny.

In what I call The Society Expectation Theory (SET), society expects old men to pass quickly so that younger people can occupy their jobs, their ranks, and of course inherit whatever wealth they have acquired. We need to be conscious of SET to guard against its consequences. SET, as one might imagine, is even worse in some cultures.

To all men who turned fifty-seven this year, I say to you, look ahead; take up a new endeavor. Let your brain and your mind turn like a windmill. If you are an engineer, get into law school; if you are an accountant, get into medical school. Start a philanthropic organization. Write a memoir. There is nothing anyone cannot do if they ignite their mind.

Whatever you choose, never take the easy way out and run yourself aground. None of the red-necked lizards descended from on top of the wall when we were watching them, and neither should men at fifty-seven.

End

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The Impact of Good Leaders in Society

Unfortunately, everywhere we go nowadays we see signs of ethical deterioration. And we ask ourselves – indeed, what is wrong with the world. The whole trend of this new century seems to be away from the principles and practices of ethics – not toward them. What is most disheartening than man’s puny spirit and man strained relationship with nature? I think we should examine our own position in relation to nature and society with the most appreciate care. Why do we tolerate bad leaders? Here, in a sentence, is the issue. One must decide how he feels about the future of his family and his community before he decides to pick the lesser of two evils. Is this really a dilemma? Frankly, is there no way out of this?

The good leader does walk in step with the sages. He knows he needs to learn more. This is because the true leader understands that everyone who wants to grow and help others to grow needs a mentor. Having a mentor can improve our chances of success. The good leader seeks disciples. He is the first one to know that he will not remain with power forever. He has a duty and a responsibility to pass on his knowledge to others. He becomes, then, a mentor. He motivates his team members all the time.

What does the bad leader do? The bad leader sits in the company of fools. He does not have knowledge. He doesn’t find himself a life mentor. Those who want to lead without listening are not working for the benefit of mankind: they care only about themselves and their political agenda. There is no full dominion over all things. Bad leaders are doing irreparable harm to their coworkers and also to their community.

On the other hand, the good leader has perfect self-control. He knows integrity pays off. He doesn’t have to cheat to win. He does choose right from wrong, and gives service to the world. Of course, ethical conduct is about self-respect.

One more thing, a good leader is the difference maker between success and failure. Good leadership offers forms of contribution that no other activity does. After all, being a leader involves the highest responsibility. Good judgement seeks balance and progress; lack of good leaders eventually finds imbalance and discouragement. Good leaders are a vital element in keeping the peace and in creating opportunities for community progress. Good leaders are the binding force that guarantees mutual respect and love.

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The Use of Ambulance Services in the Society Today

There are many situations that call for immediate or drastic medical responses or otherwise a person’s condition worsens. The ambulance service is essential in every society, in saving lives and provision of services that prevent occurrences of irreversible medical complications. Many ambulances operate from designated points like hospitals and other emergency control centers.

Some of the uses of such services include quick treatment and stabilization of casualties that lead to prevention of any mishap before getting to the hospitals. The provision of immediate and effective medical care can save a life or two and at times, it may lead to prevention of serious medical complications that may result from the emergencies that the patients are involved in. The medical crew and other persons on board get first-aid training. This makes them able to deal with situations like profuse bleeding, cardiac arrests, falls or crush injuries, among others.

The ambulances also facilitate the transportation of patients from a scene of accident to the hospital. This provides for the patients getting better and enhanced medical care that may be deemed necessary at that time. Ambulance services are also useful in the transferring of patients from one medical institution to may be a more advanced institution for more advanced treatment. Still on the transportation, the services are useful if a patient needs to be transported over long distances.

Another importance of ambulances is that they help in the provision of medical services to areas that may have been hit by disease out breaks or other serious health hazards. Another situation where these services are useful is the war zones. People get injured in war and so treatment and medical care is called for. Ambulance services can also be used in the evacuation of the injured from disaster stricken areas.

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Art is a Reflection on Society – A Perspective

Art has always been a reflection of the emotions, personal struggle, and the path breaking events of a contemporary society. When a society demands or undergoes a change, art has mostly subtly complied with it. The Oxford Dictionary describes art as “the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.” In effect, art definitely is an expressive platform for individuals, groups, as well as society, especially the radical changes or events witnessed thereof. It usually depicts the current or a particular scenario in the purview of the political situation, economic, social, geographical, the emotions spun therein, the undertones of revolutions, and uprising, to name just some.

If we go periodical about discussing art as a reflection of society, then we begin from the most ancient. The ‘Prehistoric Art’ consisted of paintings on the rocks and caves, which symbolized their routine lifestyles and rituals. The paintings were therefore, an evidence of their culture, which helped historians derive information about the life, culture, and the civilization of this era. The famous ‘Indus Valley’ or ‘Harappa,’ ‘Greek,’ and ‘Egyptian’ civilizations, especially had prolific artistry, including sculpture, architecture, paintings, engravings, and metal art.

In fact, the most we know about these amazingly rich civilizations, is credited to their narrative artifacts and buildings only. For instance, the ‘Egyptian Civilization’ believed in life after death. The society therefore, had a strong spiritual framework, concentrating more on the human journey after death. They believed in immortality and worshipped many deities, a fact distilled from the paintings adorning the walls of the great Pyramids. The Greek Civilization however, was more emphatic about the human form, its poise, and beauty, reflecting mostly on the attires, body languages, hairstyles, and cultures prevailing over different periods.

Creativity adopted the sects of ‘Art Movement’ to depict the realities of a contemporary society, vis-à-vis, its stable fabric, regularly changing aspects, and even revolutions. The impact of the contemporary socio-political scenario has also always been portrayed. For instance, before the First World War, Paris used to bustle with great political activity. This restlessness somewhere influenced the development of ‘Cubism’ by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. ‘Cubism’ involved the depiction of a particular subject from multiple angles, a practically prevalent situation then. The artistry turned mysterious in essence, to manifest the hatching of diverse political conspiracies in Paris at that time.

Expressionism’ was another art form developed, when the society was undergoing transitions at different levels, including creative. There was a revolt against the traditional outlook towards art. A modern approach was adopted. The ‘Modern Art’ was a blend of ‘Abstract Realism,’ in which the subject was distorted to depict its reality and emotional upheaval. The colors in the paintings have nearly always portrayed the true emotions of the subject, the event, or the mood of the artists.

To conclude, we can say that art may always not be beautiful aesthetically or comprehensible to all. It however, should be powerful enough to portray the current emotions of the society, including exposing harsh and subtle truths, while also encouraging the betterments. The only constant in the world is change. In tune, societies metamorphose through different annals of time and art helps capture the resulting twists and turns in the contemporary culture and lifestyle.

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Child Molestation in Our Society and a Solution

“Childhood should be carefree, playing in the sun; not living in nightmare in the darkness of the soul”. Child abuse is one of those rare topics which are being discussed in our society. This issue has become a catastrophic dilemma at this point in time. Our kids are as insecure as those who are facing armed conflicts around the globe. All kids who get abused in their childhood become mentally destructive souls. They lose their innocence and confidence. They lose their self-esteem and stability. They lose their inner critic to make their parents proud at a very young age. They curse themselves for what has happened to them. They behave like broken souls mimicking adult’s life. As a result, most of them get so frustrated and mentally retarded, that they become abusers themselves. They think that they can satisfy their inner brutal voice by taking revenge. 60% of abusers are those who have faced such situation in their childhood. They really need some psychological therapies for their wretchedness.

But anyways, it is important that we should educate our kids regarding child abuse. This is the time when this social dilemma should be openly discussed. It is a parent’s sole responsibility to teach their kids about good touches and bad touches. They should pay close attention and be able to understand their kids comfort zone. They shouldn’t allow their children to sit in someone’s lap because this is actually happening where abusers politely touch toddler’s private body parts by making them sit in their lap. Parents shouldn’t leave their kids alone with uncles and especially workers like drivers and maids. Parents should make their kids believe they will always stand by their side. Educational institutions should have wellbeing centers where students would be given full leverage to discuss their problems. Teachers should be active enough to observe the behavioral changes in student’s nature e.g if a kid who speaks a lot in class goes silent for no noticeable reason, and then it is the teacher’s responsibility to find the reason behind their silence. Most of child abuse cases take place in rural areas where people are not educated enough to educate their kids. They pay less attention towards their children wellbeing and more of their educational grades. It is a bitter truth of our society that many child abuse cases are taking place in the most sacred place called Madarras.

Finally the time has arrived that we should break our silence and be more sensible in analyzing that child abuse is a serious crime. We need to understand the intensity of the situation because these children are our future. We all should come forward and join hands in protecting these poor little souls from such horrific tragedies. Our governmental bodies should be active enough to teach these abusers terrifying lessons. They should be punished and provided with proper mental treatment. These guys are a blessing from Allah (SWT) and basic building blocks of Pakistani Nation.

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Modern Life and the Moral Bankruptcy of Our Society

A couple of weeks back I jumped on the bus home on a Saturday night. As soon as I climbed up the steps and was halfway in, I was greeted by the sight of an elderly woman standing in the aisle by the median pole. She was holding it with one hand and the backrest of the seat with the other. Nobody offered her a seat, not even the young woman who kept typing away on her mobile phone. Standing just within a few meters of the scene, I thought to myself: she ought to have given up her own. Nope, she wouldn’t do that. Appallingly, she took no notice of this elderly woman who slowly stepped down the aisle and stood right next to her seat.

The blue-toothed dumbphone user who seemed to me forever inundated by digital messages, simply acted as if she is non-existent and she didn’t much care, and wouldn’t even look up from her phone to see, to think, to realize… to live her life or to care.

That selfish act of hers, according to me, was hopeless, odd and sad beyond belief. And of course, the other one beside her in the window seat, a woman, pretended to be seriously checking her prized possession: her mobile phone didn’t seem to care much about the goings-on of the world around her either. Her face bowed forward dully aglow with diodic white light emitting from her mobile device placed on her lap. What’s more, she too acted up as if her hard-to-ignore phone is her lifeblood and she possibly could die without it if she didn’t check her messages (which she did all the time of her bus ride). Oblivious to the frail elderly woman standing near her, she won’t look up from her mobile but moved her head from side to side as if matching the dance steps to the music of some new-age sizzling funk. (She damn well knows how to groove better than Disha Patani or BeyoncĂ© Knowles or Baba Ramdev. She can even respond to that pathetic kiki challenge. It’s funny that such dance moves could be excellent for mass bowel movements!) And the elderly woman continued to keep vigil for a seat while I kept thinking to myself that at least she could have breathed easy and rested her legs a bit if she gets a seat to sit, which seemed very unlikely given all the goings-on that one has to put up with in today’s public buses. What a tragedy.

The public transport bus was jam-packed with hordes of people as they usually are in our country. But no one relinquished their seat for the elderly woman who was visibly struggling to balance her frail weight in the bone-rattling hell-raising RTC bus. This speaks a rancid lot about our so-called ‘modern times’ we live in if you ask me.

What this above story of mine illustrates the fact is that the growing public apathy towards our senior citizens in a crowded bus is not only abusive but also ill-mannered that many commuters turn a blind eye towards their basic rights. Seats earmarked for Senior Citizens are not vacated. If you think that such a thing doesn’t happen anymore than it used to be once, perish the thought immediately. Get on to a public transport bus to experience it firsthand. It happens all the time. Elderly persons are treated as second-class citizens. They certainly don’t get the kind of respect they merit. The bus drivers yell at them to hustle up their steps and get inside quickly and once inside the bus conductor shouts at them to pay up. Almost no one has patience with the elderly. You obviously don’t go around, not on a bus, do you? You may have well-maintained lambigaadis (big luxury cars!) and ultra-modern do chakkas (two-wheeler bikes!) for your luxury commute, but if you travel in a much-abused local state transport bus chock-full with the awful population, you’d know how people react or don’t react for that matter to the proceedings in the public places. Some people manage to look like they smell of three-week-old underpants, sweaty and full up with self-importance, while some others are just helpless, hapless and insensitive to the goings-on in front of them. If you ask me for a free opinion, I don’t hesitate one bit to say that humanity is going down the loo. You don’t have to even flush it; it will go down the back hole on its own! Make of it what you will, but I am getting angst-ridden about certain things happening around me – like a normal do-gooder person would be in solidarity with other fellow do-gooders who feel just the same as I do. But do-gooders are a rare breed. We can’t lay everything at the feet of the common street lingo: “That’s how the world works!” and forget about it. At the risk of painting everyone with a single brush, I’d still say that we have slowly descended ourselves into being a morally bankrupt society, even beyond bankrupt sometimes. While cows, goats, and monkeys in our country get reverential treatment, human beings get lynched, tortured, mutilated by the devious socially unfit hate mongers of their own ilk. It’s not the taxes or the money that kill civilizations, but communal unwillingness to do good deeds does. Don’t miss to add Global Warming or Climate Change to that woeful rundown of mankind’s bloody betrayals and his gross infamies.

After all, we all have one life to live, don’t we? So much for the kind of modern life we lead, especially the new millennial kind! Looks like modern life is not everyone’s cup of tea, mine neither, but can we afford to lower our basic sense of moral standards and harp about “That’s how the world works!” and escape? For this reason alone, personally speaking, modern life (not modern society) sucks. BOOYAHH!!!

I have often wondered if people are getting worse in the allegedly ‘modern world’ we live in. Indeed, I do lament the way we live in the 21st century. It appears as if we live in the Dark Ages – (Jurassic age? Because the term Jurassic is the latest thing these days! But hey! Not the motion picture one wherein those Dinos acceptably figure out to eat everything that moves and dump a huge bombshell of poop and puke that doesn’t. Not their fault, it’s a call of nature. I was just delineating their evolutionary tantrum, safely keeping out the shimmering exotic fare of petrified Dino-droppings and leaving out suggesting how amazingly big a pile was that!) – and not in the supposedly modern world you (not I) millennial Generation Y (mine was thankfully gen X, status: bygone, but those days are still missed) sing fuzzy praises to every day of your glum, apps-controlled paralyzed life.

The World Is In Eclipse

Tell me, why is everyone so pissed off these days? Trump, Kim, Brexit, Isis, Doklam, and Rakhine are just a handful of those deadly affairs that make me wince in peevish sympathy and drop an expletive or two for what is happening around us. You ask why sympathy? Because I am a helpless common man and I pity my own breed which I think is at risk of losing sight of its main purpose, which is to be HUMAN first.

The world is in eclipse. The dangerous Dumbledores of the world and there are, oh God, a whole bunch of these power-hungry hustlers: no wonder, their soul-culling tweets trump up a miasmic front-page spotlight for themselves and continually dictate deadly injunctions for everyone to fall in line with their malevolent designs or else… your way of life as you know it is most certainly doomed. All this don’t give me a future to dream about. However, that’s a sordid tale I want to write about some other time if I’m alive. Trust me; it’s past the point where it is not possible to save the world from going down the drains or going up the exhaust pipe, so to speak. Mankind’s folly: global warming is going to claim the whole world anyway. One day or another Nature’s fury is going to unleash the conveyor belt of punishment we are so foolishly itching to deserve. If not, we anyway have these Dumbledores up in arms to snuff the Earth out from its orbit. Living in the modern world is akin to humankind’s dilemma of getting caught between the cliff and the whirlpool, no easy way out to remedy this curse.

Forget about going to the inhabitable Mars where signs of probable alien life in lakes and valleys are a dime a dozen, or Jupiter or any other vapid dustblown space rock hanging out their dirty linen for us to take the bait, Earth is the one and only game reserve of co-existing animals, marauding humans, and birds we have been granted by the Gods. Thank God, we have no other home and thank God there will not be another. We’re all in this together; on our third rock from the Sun. We’ve to live here and kick the bucket here. Tell me Elon Musk, are you getting visions of interstellar travel and all that aspirational jazz that comes with it? Do you fancy shaking hands with the aliens, the little green-gooed extraterrestrials that might fancy checking out your ‘spacex’ gigs? Go home stupid. It’s never gonna happen. On second thought, the only concession I am willing to give you is for your electric vehicle (EV) your ‘Teslaphiles’ are going to complete manufacturing. That’s going to be something optimistically good in the race to save our planet from the harmful impacts of tons and tons of carbon emissions. Thank you for the “giant cybernetic collective” to produce zero-pollution vehicles. Sounds great for the environment. But interstellar travel? Forget it, man. It’s never going to work. Now go on, go home.

Let me get my head around the topic at hand first which I admit is far more complicated than I thought it would be. But allow me this small transgression to write a short reflective account as I have a depressing allegory of modern times to narrate. Please don’t blame me crazy; you know how the modern world works: passing double meaning comments masquerading as jokes which are expected to be taken lightly and not seriously even if they seem ridiculously stupid, being critically judgmental (now, this is a disease common among most of us) and ‘like’ it or not the invasion of omnipresent social media are but just a few of the pain vanillas to lament about in this so-called modern life of yours and mine. However, I grant that I know fairly little of the way the world works politically and economically, but I’m glad you are doing just great being a clever know-all monster of sorts, don’t you Mr. Trump? How about you Mr. Kim? Besides, Mr. Kim, it seems that the Dumbledores of the Trumpian world can make you and your country rich (Trump Tower-size if you like), but only if you give up your weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and lose your weight! Get trendy, Mr. Kim. And what is that gelled hairsty… ? Oh never mind. Good on you. You did the thing right by pledging to denuclearize. Good riddance of those funny-looking penile rockets of yours, they don’t belong to humankind. God bless you, Kim ji. You’ve fallen in line. You had to, I understand. Your country’s soil will soon get enriched with Trump Towers and all that deck of matchboxes will scrape the sky of your island nation, as promised by that nasty presidential counterfeiter of America, the hot-headed Don whose official house (not his tower) is white. Meanwhile, Earth is saved again, for now at least. Sigh.

My Last-Ditch Effort at Living a Modern Life

Yet, I have other pebbles to pick from the beach – my last-ditch effort at living life without going through the revolting “start-from-the-scratch” scenarios again, if it really is possible living life without having to correct any mistakes, it will really be of no great help. Correcting one’s previously committed mistakes often tantamount to one’s, I believe, willingness to do good for oneself and move on; you get to be morally upright, and stuff like that works in the world where you have to sometimes rub shoulders with fundamentally-immoral people. This is one of the reasons why living life king size has been a subject of dislike or anathema to me as I feel I am not intended to live my life the way most middle-class people are aspiring (or perspiring) to – that is to earn money only to lose it at the shopping malls, buying stuff that is really not needed. That’s a lot of impulse buying spree there. Have money, will splurge syndrome. And mind you I don’t have problems with the kind of life people live because I don’t need to be racked with humbug anxiety that could bring my Waterloo closer than I want it to. For all I know, of my pickled brain predilections and predicaments, they live their lives better than I can ever hope to.

Most people who have a little bit of money buy big houses, spacious flats in gated communities, flashy phones, big cars they don’t really need. I think people suffer from the ill effects of ‘rock-bottom’ self-esteem and emotional maturity, a kind of personality deficit that needs a high-touch of perpetual glare from their own community members or from the general society at large, massaging their inflated egos in the process. According to me, these are the most obvious reasons why they want to show off how successful they are in life and their newly acquired wealth to buy anything others can’t. Roaming around in swishy cars with swishier names and swishiest number plates make them feel that they should be taken seriously and therefore look unabashedly successful while they are at it. This sounds like envy talking above his pay grade. Does it really? I am not envious of anybody’s wealth or success, why should I be? All that I ever crave for is my family and gharerbhojon(home-cooked food) with dal bhaat (lentils soup and rice) with macher jhol (fish curry) on the menu, and visit temples and light incense sticks for the presiding deity’s darshon.

Looking at his flashy new phone, I once pried one of our society’s self-certified homdachomdas(big shot figures, most likely of the predatory Harvey Weinstein stock) who can be considered nothing short of an inveterate materialistic-consumerist junkie: Is it really required to spend extravagantly on an expensive phone costing upwards of Rs. 80,000? The answer sounded like a lame excuse, “Oh!! I just love gadgets and you know what, this is” flashing his latest mobile acquisition to me “absolute NIRVANA”. I pitied him. I just hope our paths never cross again.

I find their mentality to be basically corrupt to not want to have just a small house or an apartment or travel in a public transport whenever required. In today’s advertising-driven world, they see others affording material luxuries so they too want to do likewise. They too want to have it all and flaunt it and impress others in their community. That’s not normal according to my left-leaning style of living; it’s abnormal. People come up with excuses such as, “I love gadgets, you know”; “I want a big house, mansion-like” to justify the ‘power’ they derive from their amassing of wealth and the misguided feeling of a high societal position they hanker after. Yeah, the king wants to roam great halls and look down from the arched balconies! How bullying is that.

Even their personality traits like newfound accent, their walking style and body language, their spoken language, so on and so forth changes, irrespective of the fact that almost every one of them might have had started off from humble and modest origins. Forgetting their humble past, they hurtle towards a future that can never be sustainable from the standpoint of our planet Earth’s lifespan in the day and age of rising temperatures and habitat loss. I am not one of judging people but I find it shameful really. People buy swanky blah, blah, blah, stuff to attract attention as if they want others to consider them more important than they were previously unaccustomed to and respect them for what they have ‘achieved’. Nikes on their feet and Rolexx at their wrists – what bloody pride!

Well, what I mean to say is that there are no ‘WMDs’ in my life to protect. (Poor Mr. Kim used to have a different kind of WMDs but he’d wisely destroyed them or so it seems). My ‘WMDs’ are carbon emissions kind I need to find ways to put a stop to. However, I try to lead a plain vanilla type of life and yet at the end of the day I happen to contribute to the soaring temperatures of our planet’s fragile ecosystems which I don’t ever like to. To me, the natural world is more important than enjoying manmade luxuries that come with an expiry date. Modern life is unsustainable. But the fact is there’re no immediate ‘WMDs’ in my life to seriously think about. The empathy towards our global biodiversity and climate stability should be a necessary motivator for making the world a better place to live in. Ignoramuses like Mr. Trump and Mr. Kim should have to know.

The Left-Socialist type of life is also what I mean, not the consumption-heavy globalized Free-Market rape capitalism type that plunders our beautiful blue planet. The latter part of our economic success story sucks for sure. In the man-made made-to-size globalized world, king size modern life is anathema to me. The high, coarse standards of lifestyle that we all have set ourselves to get accustomed to has become the harbinger of global carbon emissions and rising temperatures contributing to greenhouse gases and crumbling ice shelves. These dangerous inconvenient truths are sure to combust our planet to a fiery annihilation. Like a bheegibilli (a cat scared wet with fear) I am frightened of these unforgiving phenomena crippling our way of life on a delicate planet we call home, our only home. Certainly, we’ll be really so stupid if we didn’t do anything about global warming already.

What I mean to say is we need to figure out a way to radically remake the global economy that’ll prevent global temperatures from rising. It is possible to do that. Cutting our lifestyle needs by half and controlling the population of humans are two acts of faith that can be believed in as new beginnings for greater common good. Otherwise, there’d be nothing left for us to do business with. Now I am not fond of lecturing but that’s the truth, and the truth is always inconvenient to bear. Global warming is an inconvenient truth for those who think it isn’t. So much for the moral high horses-bourses: Wall Street, BSE, Nikkei and other stock market WMDs perpetuating Buy Sell, Buy Sell catcalls of plunder. All of these global stock market fucks are in bed with greenhouse gas-guzzling counterparts of the global warming deniers. Oh, fuck! What did I just say? Oh my god! Oh my god! So you want to lynch me now? Lynch me if you can. But the truth is always stranger than fiction, mind you. Nevertheless, it’s my last-ditch effort at living a modern life. Afterward, I may be attending God’s good humour party uninvited. I don’t know… I give up.

Living king size life directly contributes to an incorrigible global warming that we cannot roll back: not even to the point when, post liberalization of our economy, we gradually started to turn ourselves into a narrow-minded bunch of an addictive reptile-brained consumerist mall-hopping shopping rats, some kind of angry bird-loving misfits, and junk food spendthrifts. (There are always exceptions. Not all of us sane ones have become wide-eyed in-your-face individuals). Today, we buy more than we need; we eat more than we digest. Ultimately, all this sacrilegious practice is going to sound the gong of death knell for our beautiful blue planet as we know it. Earth time’s up. (God forbid not). If mankind doesn’t mend their often intentional blunders, Gods are bound to act by their Godly codex to send in their WMDs in the form of Global Warming, Climate Change, Sea Rise, Temperature Rise, you name it. Now, man up and deal with it. Let’s collectively mend our ways. We should, must, or else we are all dead. Am I yakking too much about a holier-than-thou attitude that I seem to have possessed? I don’t think so. But climate change is an obscene reality today. We must have set our Earth’s climate to the point of no return but it should not stop us from doing something to turn the tables on climate change. My personal ranting about it here may not seem irrelevant or not noteworthy as to be very important a distress call but still, we need to urgently think to save our mother Earth from becoming just another dead chunk of rock in the solar system. Think about it.

I think PUBLIC APATHY IS AN AILMENT OF THE SO-CALLED MODERN SOCIETY TODAY or why would anyone in his/her healthy mind, body and soul be not able to offer the humble aged passenger a seat to sit on? As I did not get a seat myself, I just stood there guiltily shifting my weight from one foot to another, getting really concerned, unable to move further up the aisle to try and ask someone to get up and let her sit. I was tortured by regret and unable to fathom why no one’s conscience is getting pricked. Where have their good morals gone? They’ve gone with the wind: of fake news, social media trolls, hate speech and an abusive crucifix of hashtags all tossed and lovingly tousled on a self-gratifying tourney to a land of twisted egos and self-important algorithms that changes colours out-performing even a Chameleon.

I know I’d be heckled, rebuked and shouted at for daring to ask someone to get up and let the woman sit, so I didn’t dare. I was stuck in the mute crowd of ‘modern’ people oblivious to the situation the elderly woman has found herself in, for no fault of hers. How people have shunned their morals for good, and they talk about getting jobs, wanting a nice new girlfriend and bragging about human rights as if it is their baap ka maal(their father’s property!). In a conjuring devil’s phraseology, these kinds of people run the risk of getting labelled as motherless fuckers but they won’t be ashamed. Even if they do fall to that level of culpable human indignity, they don’t think they will ever be ashamed of themselves; rather they’ll wear it as a batch of honour on their chest – rhino thick-skinned hides they lead their life in, being unmindful and uncaring of the old woman’s plight.

Modern Life Is Rubbish. It Sucks.

There are a number of issues in life that in some way compel you to start from scratch all over again to turn them back from worse. That’ll be a golden chance for you if such an opportunity comes by. To remedy some mistakes of your life is a different ballgame, probably a task best suited to procrastination. While there are some others you don’t get a chance to resurrect your earlier ills, you still feel the none-the-wiser about the ones you are bound to make. They (life’s issues) are too far gone into the inaccessible Past for you to be able to make amends. I confess I have had over the years my share of ups and downs (I call them issues), good and bad times, rights and wrongs, as far as ‘issues’ were concerned. If truth be told frankly, there have been quite a few I had had to tackle but failed miserably. That’s why I don’t think about them anymore. But they do manage to worry me from time to time.

Modern life sucks if it has to. It will by all means, but whose humanity is it anyway? Yes, ours. We are collectively together in it: in the Earth’s primordial soup. Pardon my use of such a language if you will; old habits die hard. Without an iota of doubt, in the ‘issues’ department modern life definitely sucks, fairly and squarely. It’s a Baadurer choshajibon! – A Bat’s suck life.

They say “post 9/11”, life in the supposedly ‘changed world’ continues to slipshod and promises to keep at it unabated. There’s no hope of resurrection. Only the ‘start-from-scratch-all-over-again’ decree prevails if you fall for it. Modern life is now modern death. On the one hand, to live one’s life in an increasingly shrinking post-truth world of modernity, particularly the terse drivel behind “You’re either with us or against us!”, “Advanced versus the third world,” and “Us versus them” intimidation sucks, and on the other death might be long-drawn but never quick. Dying multiple deaths is the new world order. It’s Kali Yuga; the nemesis of humankind is imminent. You don’t have to pack up, you’ll be sent packing! If it’s the end of morality then it is the end of humanity too.

While I understand that there will always be “issues” but… who cares? Get up and smell coffee. Modern life is such an unforgiving fancy mistress (or in some cases a courtesan! To each his own.). Either you get hitched or get restless without a girlfriend. Either way, you are doomed! What kind of attitude (positive?) will be adequately OK to deal with this preposterous thing called modern life? If you pay attention you’ll know that the basic inquiry still remains as it is: Will you be a game to conform to its intrigues and succumb to it, or agitate against it? Think about it. You might have an answer to that question. I never did. Never will. Unless, Mr. Kim retires from managing his country, Mr. Trump backs off… to his Tower, Islamic State (Isis) expunged from future history books and other such horrible disasters. Not to mention Iran, Iraq, Syria and the list goes on crooning an irredeemable tune of death and destruction.

Modern life is bound to be rubbish and I am acting as if I had never been kissed! Regardless of whether you like it or not, you are still living the so-called modern life and already kissing it goodbye for all you know. As things stand in my life now, I can’t be confident feeling that I am faring better than the most. Not by any stretch of the imagination. That’s not how I ought to feel about myself? That’s not normal for me. Why? Faring better than everyone is not my idea of living my life normally as well as judiciously, wisely even. I can’t fare better than others. Not my mug of coffee I hold to take a sip from. I am not a fool to suggest that I cannot fare better at all: I can but in my own sweet egoistical way, on my own terms. That sounds better to me. Yes, Dude, I don’t generally know better about modern life, others do, for the most part, I think. What I am mortally scared shit of is having to ‘start-from-scratch-all-over-again’ or “start-over-once-more” or getting back to square one (add GST to that, amen!); it really gets my goose not cooked but overcooked for my taste. My brain works!

If there’s a boon granted to me to live my life over again, I’d dare to make more mistakes, take more chances, take fewer things seriously, ride more merry-go-rounds, fall in love, be sillier than I have been this trip, eat more ice creams and more biryani, pick more daisies… but none that would contribute to global warming or climate change. Thank you very much for this one wild and precious life. Let me not go amiss from the actual topic we are discussing here. Old habits die hard indeed. A little more reading and you are done for good.

End Story

Morally bankrupt people opine that the modern world is a harsh place to live in, so bear with it. Maybe one of my friend’s ‘retractable claw’ theory and his eternal bachelorhood plans is one way to deal with the modern world. With no one to care for my friend, I’m afraid as days turn into months and months into years, his life is bound to get lonelier and lonelier in a world that sounds increasingly bankrupt of morality these days. But again, one man’s theory could be another man’s fury, so to each his own way of life. Yet, surviving the modern world is no less than a miracle if you ask me.

The poor old woman in the bus is one such depressing case which, I think, can be termed as an aberration of general moral bankruptcy on the part of some bus passengers who never cared two hoots about offering a seat for her to sit down. Holding the overhead post and leaning wearily against a median shaft, she had to keep standing for nearly 10 kilometres, good three-quarters of an hour all the way to the north of the city.

When the bus reached my stop, I felt a sigh of relief when I suddenly noticed that the young smartphone-wielding lass who all throughout the bus ride kept typing away on her phone vacated her seat, and that’s when the poor old woman who had to stand for nearly 10 kilometres took her chance to sit down. I am sure she must have thanked profusely not that carefree, unconcerned and immature lass but her merciful God for the much-needed relief in the form of a seat.

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